This week on the Wal-Tor Weekly Review, we’re really busy with lots of prep for Fan Expo this weekend in Toronto. I only get to read two comics instead of three, but they’re both super cool and enjoyable. First up is “Deadpool vs. Thanos” followed by the new Image Comics title, “Plutona”.
Deadpool vs. Thanos #1
Deadpool only has one true love in life: the skeletal, black hooded, absolute bombshell of a lady, Death. But the problem for Deadpool is that someone else seeks Death’s affection as well, with that someone being none other than the Mad Titan himself, Thanos. Things get a little weird for the Merc with a Mouth when people on Earth suddenly become immune to dying. If that’s not enough of a problem, the already deceased start rising from their graves as well, meaning Death no longer holds any domain over Earth. All this points Deadpool towards Thanos for a climatic showdown, believing Thanos is the cause for all of it.
Tim Seeley and Elmo Bondoc bring the world the heavyweight showdown you never knew you wanted with Deadpool vs. Thanos #1. Admittedly, the fight is about as one-sided as you’d come to expect but that doesn’t stop this creative team from trying to do something fun with the characters. By the end of the issue, this series spins around and appears to be heading in a direction you wouldn’t have expected. Tim Seeley is a great voice for the character of Deadpool, having the comedic knack for writing a character of that caliber. It’s incredibly easy to compare his take on the character to Daniel Way’s approach from several years ago, aligning well with fans of that work. The plot itself is a little all over the place but still manages to reel it in when it needs to. Elmo Bondoc has an awful first page for the comic but then turns into an all-star immediately after, providing a comic that looks great and strikes the right visual storytelling beats to draw the reader in. On the first page of the book, the words get in the way of all the panels Elmo uses, cluttering the page to the reader’s eyes in an unappealing way. After you stomach the first page, Elmo’s artwork gets the chance to shine as his panel choices help to really guide everything this story is attempting to accomplish.
|+ Great character interpretations||— Words get in the way of artwork at times|
|+ Interesting story||— Sporadic plot|
Tim Seeley and Elmo Bondoc give the word a fun new Deadpool miniseries starting with Deadpool vs. Thanos #1. Tim Seeley has the writing on the title characters down pat, encompassing everything that makes Deadpool awesome while also perfectly capturing the sour nature of Thanos. Although the plot plays it a little loose throughout, Seeley does enough with the story to generate reader interest for the duration of the comic. Elmo Bondoc has a rough first page and then is awesome for the rest of the issue. His artwork and panel choices are great for guiding the reader’s eyes while keeping them engaged all the way through. By the end of the issue you’ll absolutely be a fan of Bondoc’s artwork. This first issue is a solid launching pad for what is sure to be an absolutely bizarre, but perfectly Deadpool, miniseries.
Plutona follows the lives of five average teenagers whose lives are forever changed and bonded by a startling discovery. Set in Metro City, with plenty of superhero sightings, each of these five teenagers all have separate lives from each other aside from attending the same school. When the kids discover a grim scene in their local forest, they’re all stunned and unsure how to proceed. In a back-up story by Jeff Lemire, we learn all about the busy life of the woman underneath the mask of Plutona and how that affects her family.
Plutona #1 by Jeff Lemire, Emi Lenox, and Jordie Bellaire is an absolutely perfect first issue of a comic in many regards. It’s also a hard comic to review without spoiling everything because of how the story pans out. To be blunt, if you know what the comic is about before coming into reading it, you’ve already had the big reveal at the end of the issue spoiled. But, credit should be given to Lemire, Lenox, and Bellaire for being so great at their respective crafts as it doesn’t matter that you know what happens in the issue before even reading it. The artwork, the plot, the characters, the colours, and just about everything else about this comic just works. Lemire creates memorable characters that you want to learn more about. The issue plays out at a solid pace, that never tells too fast or too slow of a tale, being the perfect pace for this kind of story. The back-up story written and drawn by Lemire is a nice punctuating final note to the issue that can easily resonate with the reader. Personally, I found myself thinking everything that Plutona was thinking before she even said it, showing Lemire has a deep understanding of the position the character is in. Jordie Bellaire’s colours on top of Jeff Lemire’s artwork just elevates everything you see in such a positive way that it’s astounding.
Now let’s talk about Emi Lenox for a second because she deserves her own paragraph for the work she does in this issue. Co-plotting and drawing the main story of the comic, Emi Lenox is an absolute phenomenal. People will likely pick up the comic because of Jeff Lemire’s name on the cover but you’ll stay for Lenox’s work within the book. Lenox effortlessly sets every scene in a compelling or dramatic fashion, keeping you hooked from the first panel to the last panel. As I mentioned above, Lemire creates memorable characters but it’s Emi who brings them to life. Each of the main characters gets a full-page dedicated to their introduction, showcasing their morning as they get ready for school. We see how wildly different each character’s life is from the next one, with very few words actually being used. Visually, Emi lays out the heart and soul of these characters in just four pages, with six to seven panels on each of these pages. It’s all simply brilliant how easily Lenox defines these characters and their personalities through her artwork. Jordie Bellaire’s colouring also works excellently with Emi’s artwork, using a strong, soft palette that shows how perfect this creative team is for each other. It’s all a match made in heaven that deserves your time, money, and most importantly, love.
|+ Excellent artwork||— I don’t have enough room to write the pros of this book|
|+ Well defined characters||— It’s really flippin’ good|
|+ Great plot|
Jeff Lemire, Emi Lenox, and Jordie Bellaire deliver a beautiful first issue with Plutona. Think Stand By Me and Breakfast Club with superheroes and you’ve got the story in a nutshell. Lemire crafts some excellent lead characters that Lenox effortlessly brings to life on the page. The plot is fairly straightforward but still carries weight with it. Lenox is the all-star of the issue, drawing some beautiful pages and building the story around her artwork. Jordie Bellaire is an essential piece of this successful puzzle as her colouring only elevates the artwork done by Lenox in the main story and Lemire in the back-up.